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SICK AS A DOG; EXCLUSIVE Adair treated in top hospital for mystery illness.

Byline: By DAVID COLLINS

FORMER UFF chief Johnny "Mad Dog" Adair is being treated for a mystery illness.

The 43-year-old is known to have checked in at the leading Stobhill Hospital, Glasgow, where he was treated in the Urology ward.

Urology is a branch of medicine that focuses on the urinary tract and sexual problems.

He was discharged on July 31, but it is believed he has been seen by doctors at Ayr Hospital, which would be closer to his home in Troon. One source said Adair's problems may be the result of steroid binges during his bodybuilding stint in the Maze prison.

At the time it was reported he controlled their supply into the UFF wings.

Onlookers were stunned by his muscular frame when he walked from the jail having served less than five years of a 16-year term for directing terrorism.

He strolled out four stone heavier than when he went in.

Rippling biceps and a Mike Tyson-style neck burst out of his tight-fitting designer T-shirt.

Adair met the then Secretary of State Mo Mowlam in the jail in January 1998 after a string of UFF murders. One veteran warder said: "He and his mates spent a lot of their time in the gym.

"But you don't get to his size just lifting weights on their own.

"We know they were using steroids for some time but there was little point trying to take the drugs off them.

"The paramilitaries had been running the jail for years. Why should we put our lives on the line if we know the management won't support us?"

Speaking about the effect of steroids, one Belfast GP said: "Steroids exist in the body in small amounts without which the body would not work but when you take artificial steriods for muscle building you just screw the whole body up.

"They can damage the liver, kidneys and fertility.

"They let you build muscles like a buffalo, yet it does untold long-term damage on the body.

"When you stop taking them you can get serious withdrawl problems.

"It can shrink your private parts and affect your fertility."

Adair fled to Scotland in 2005 after he was driven out of his West Belfast stronghold by a rival UDA faction in the Shankill area.

He has repeatedly vowed to return but he remains under death threat from his former terrorist comrades.

ulster@mirror.co.uk

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2007 Adair beefed up his physique while in prison; 1998 Lean Adair as he was
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Aug 25, 2007
Words:416
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